Thursday, July 25, 2013

Neil Gaiman and Virtuals in Ann Arbor

One of our many adventures this summer was a trip to Ann Arbor to meet Neil Gaiman!  My sister and brother-in-law introduced me to his books, starting with Good Omens.  As a result, this was my selection as my book for World Book Night this year!

Lorna bought tickets for the signing at the Michigan Theater.  We left early so we wouldn't miss a thing!  We started by walking around the U of M Union Building (to see where John F. Kennedy announced the Peace Corp).  Then off to dinner, passing Graffiti Alley.  And finally, the Michigan Theatre.

Lorna at the Peace Corp benchmark

Plague on The Union wall

Close-up of the benchmark

Lorna and Corey at The Union

Graffiti Alley

Me and the Sandman

Although we arrived early, Neil was very late.  His flight had been delayed by the Asiana flight that had crashed in San Francisco.  I've worked bookstore "signing events" for years, but I've never seen a more relaxed and excited crowd then this group of 1700 fans sitting in a hot theater, in close quarters for over 2 hours.  Neil arrived gracious and apologetic - he went right into his reading.  It was SO worth it.

Michigan Theatre

1700 fans waiting in good spirits


Several hours later, we finally had our autographs.  When I reached Neil, I welcomed him to Michigan and said that I had hoped we had treated them well.  He enclosed my hand in his warm, big ones and said he was so grateful for such a warm Michigan welcome and that he couldn't believe how that we all waited so patiently.

Lining up for the signing

Orderly and excited

Signing Ocean at the End of the Lane

If you have never experienced a Neil Gaiman book, it is particularly enjoyable read by the author.  Here is a free link to Neil reading Chivalry (the same story he read in person at the signing).  Enjoy!

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